June 30, 2009

Tutus and Pettiskirts

Oh, it's such a girl thing - who are we kidding?!? And here's my shameless promotional plug for my dear friend Desiree - who owns a fab-o kids online store called Princess and Pirates. Click the link to check it out - but let's focus ladies, shall we?

Behold only a very small handful of the fu-fu tutu goodness that could be yours. Gasp!

How to choose?!?! You should see the orange and pink one. Oh, or the black and hot pink one...omg! To.Die. For.

If not for professional kiddo pictures you could take (or have taken), then at least for playing dress up, or party-going, or...maybe for dinner with Daddy? I don't know...there's got to be multiple reasons to own one of these. Or two. I'm just sayin...

Stop over and visit Des and her cute little corner of the world at P & P and you can see what I'm jabberin' about....so freaking cute! Me likey...me likey a lot!

Get em' while their hot, people!

Have fun, shopper gals!

June 28, 2009

In five, four, three, two....(silent finger up for one)

and we're back!

Well, it was a much needed and very appreciated time away. Both from the blog and from town.

The things that I needed to take care of and the time that I needed away...the Christie time that I was seeking out - all those things were addressed. And actually, I should say that - I had no intention of leaving town - but thanks to my ever charming husband who knows me all too well - we were invited to spend a cost free three days at a cabin in the Ozarks. Our expectations weren't high - we were just thrilled to get away. Anton's parents agreed to keep our little mister - and we were looking forward to the time to have uninterrupted thoughts and conversation. Maybe even to read a book - or nap for hours on end! Ahhhh, bliss!

In fact, we were so pleasantly shocked at the beauty and tranquility of this delightful cabin. In the middle of virtually no-where...with the most amazing views of the mountains from every side of the front and back porch. Everything about it was quaint...warm...and just plain old welcoming. The hosts were friends of the family - and they own the little cabin - living not too far away from it. They completely stocked the fridge and pantry, made sure the air was on to compensate for the heat, and everything we could possibly need was accounted for. It was unbelievable! The minute we walked in the door, we decided we wanted to stay for weeks! (If only that were possible!!)

But we didn't waste one minute of our time alone - and it was such a sweet and memorable time together. We quite literally didn't leave for three days - and finally ventured into town to try out a recommended hole in the wall cafe for breakfast (which, did not disappoint). Anton cooked the most amazing meals in that little kitchen.

We spent mornings on the front porch, cup of coffee in hand, and journals at the ready. Talking, breathing in the mountain air and listening to the few sounds we could hear - birds and forest life. It was enchanting.

We would move indoors to read, or spend time talking - napping, writing, playing games...just as we had planned to do. We literally ate, slept, ate, slept, and ate some more. It was an amazing time of rest and nourishment for our minds and our bodies. And more so for our marriage...

Who knew how much weight could be placed on being able to have a complete and coherent conversation with the one you love? We didn't. Until we were able to...and realized how easy it was - in just one short year - (maybe more...) to slip into a parenting routine that virtually strips you of your alone time. You don't even see it coming. Don't even notice it going...

Then you realize you're on different roads...and you're hollering back and forth - trying to communicate between the distance. Trying to move forward, while the distance between you makes it harder and harder to drive.

We didn't even realize it had gotten that bad. But I suspect it's this way in most marriages. The important thing is, to spot it and address it immediately. My experience tells me - it will not go away on its own. You must deal with it. Talk about it. Get away (even for a weekend) and reconnect - get on the same road again...or better yet, the same vehicle!

I think for me, the unknowns, as I previously blogged about, were really starting to take their toll. I know I'm not alone. I have many women friends who I talk with regularly. Many of us share the same anxiety - the same fears - the same sadness. What am I doing, where am I going, what's the point, who is this for, is there more?!?!

Fortunately, I was able to answer a lot of those questions in the middle of the Ozarks. I had time to process with the person I trust most in this world. I cried, I laughed, I journaled, and cried some more. I talked at great length, and he listened. He talked (albeit at not as great a length as me) and I listened. We got to the bottom of some patternistic behaviors we both have, and how we can work on them. We shared our hopes for our little family - and were relieved to see that we wanted the same things - thank God - we still wanted the same things for us and for our future.

We made some good progress on why I was feeling so blue - and now I have some work I need to do to address those things. "Some work" is kind of an understatement - but for the sake of both giving you some transparency while maintaining some privacy - I'll leave it at that.

So needless to say - it's good to be home, and it's good to be back. Everyone needs a little break now and then - and I think I was overdue on giving myself the permission for one.

Quint did spectacular with his grandparents, and they fell hook line and sinker for that dimpled smile of his! My only beef? He didn't cry. Not even once. Stinker! On the way home he boo-hoo'd and whined...so we called them up and let them listen. "Not even once?" I joked. "You never heard this?" I prodded, while holding the phone close to his wailing. Nope. Not even once. Well, wonders never cease. Guess he saves it all up for momma. Sigh.

Outside of returning to life as we know it - there have been many things going on:

One of our dogs got injured and had to have stitches on her face. Boo! Same dog also got sick all over the house and our bed while we were gone. Poor Pet-Sitter. Boo!

AB took up a summer job working in a fine-dining restaurant as a chef. Whooyaa! You go baby! He wants the experience to put in his mental filing cabinet for the "own your own restaurant someday" dream. So proud of you!

Quint is 19 months and growing like a weed. He's still not speaking - BUT! today I said "hey Quint, say dog" and he looked at me and said "dog". Then he flashed the impish grin. Little turd. We're still working with ECI in the meantime to get him up to speed. Yaay for words! He's also babbling up a storm. Won't be long now and I won't be able to turn it off.

We're enjoying the summer - but wheewee is it hot in Texas. We're in the 100's and upper 90's. Yikes! Even the pool water is a little too warm - even though that doesn't seem to keep us from it! Quint is working on becoming a water bug. So far, so good.

Yard work is for the birds. Boo. Two thumbs down.

Still ticked off at Jon and Kate. Double Boo.

Have a raging head cold that has left me feeling completely miserable since Thursday night. UGH!

Ok, and just a little (ahem) side note. China has matched families through 3-20-06 as of last week. Reminder: we're 3-29-06. Now, I do not expect to see July referrals that will include 9 days. However, I do expect we'll see our little KJB in the next two to three months. I do expect they will take as long as possible to match the next 9 days - but still. Only nine days. I can remember all too well when it was 4 months ahead of us...or 2 months. Just nine days. Piece of cake. Right? Gulp.

June 26, 2009

Couple who just renewed their vows and said they'd never divorce, said what?!?!

Ok - preface: I will post about the trip we took, the absence, the latest, etc. Standby. Need some time on that one.

But after coming back from said trip, I sat my bo-hiney down on the couch to see what I missed on Monday. What the big "announcement" was. What the fuss would be.

Say what?!?!?

Anton and I were speechless. Almost depressed.

Anton walked out of the room with a scoff and muttered "so selfish".

I wanted to write the network, wanted to send a fan-mail, wanted to sniffle in my soup...

Instead, I remembered I have this little corner of the world in which I can effectively vent to my heart's content. So this is my random rant of the day.

P.O'd, folks. That's what I am.

Did they not just renew their vows a year ago in front of those EIGHT children and say they would never get divorced - come hell or high-water? WHAT THE FRIG!

When you have EIGHT frigging kids, you better freaking work it out. TALK. Communicate. (Remember K said he won't even talk to her at all - no communication?) Walk through it with professionals who can help you sort it out. Take a breather. Get to know each other again. Remember why you fell in love to begin with. Apply some grace. Apply some forgiveness. Make some changes. Do the work. Think of the dang kids, for crying out loud.

When you are being monumentally selfish and putting yourself first (not your kids, as you pretend to) - that's when you walk away and freaking use the word "excited" like Jon did when he spoke of moving on. Freaking earring in his stupid ear...I wanted to rip it out.

How many times did J say "I have to take care of myself". BS. No, you have to step up and be a man, and take care of your wife (that YOU chose and married) and YOUR eight children - that YOU brought into the world. Sometimes you have to wake up and say that you may not FEEL like loving your spouse today, but you CHOOSE to. It's hard work to be married and have a good marriage. It takes constant care. Constant communication. Constantly putting your spouse first - each living for the other.

How many times did K say "I will put my children first, always". Well guess what? That's your friggin problem, sister. Mom and Dad first. Spouse first. Not kiddos. Take care of Mom and Dad, and kids will follow. How about stop disparaging your husband every opportunity you get - to his face - in front of your children and the rest of the America? Maybe show your kids what love looks like by respecting each other, loving each other, putting each other first. What a valuable and tremendous thing you will teach them about love and marriage.

Selfish. Selfish. Selfish.

They said they don't want to fight in front of the kids. Don't want the kids to see that. Well here's an idea...DON'T then. Learn to communicate. Learn to respect each other. Learn to not emasculate your husband 24/7.

Oh sh!@#!@#$#@% I could go on and on.

I'm so pissed. What a crock of crap. Two selfish people, acting selfishly, to take care of #1. Themselves first. Kids second. Spouse last.

Kate said it - "we're making our kids a statistic". Wow. You sure are, aren't you? And surprisingly, you're going to go through with it anyway. Hmmm...Selfish.


*Please remember this is my personal blog and as such, the opinions expressed here are my own and I am entitled to them. i.e. don't send me hate mail. You're entitled to disagree.

June 20, 2009


we're going to take an impromptu mini-vacation.

we know a friend who knows a friend who has a fully furnished but lovely rustic family cabin in the Ozarks.

she's generously offered to let us stay in the cabin this week, and so we're going to take her up on it.

this will be a wonderful time for us and a lovely opportunity to get away and relax for several days.

we leave tomorrow and return thursday. and to extend my blog-absence slightly longer, there is no internet at the cabin. while this is great for us - it does put me further out on an updated post. but i think you're all ok with that. the comments have been nothing but supportive of my self-imposed silence.

for those worried - i can put your mind at ease. there is nothing wrong that cannot be fixed. nothing broken that is not repairable. nothing lost that can't be found. and of course, i speak to my own heartache, sadness, and a good case of the the "blahs". i can already feel some of that lifting slightly. sometimes it just takes lots of reflection and a good support system - of which I have the very best friends and family - and the world's best husband!

i do wish that i could blog on tuesday to say how perplexed/sad/angry/p.o'd/etc. i am going to be when jon and freaking kate announce they are divorcing during their 1-hour special monday night. that is going to send me into a rant. when you have eight little kids - you better dang well work it out. you don't just quit. life sucks. it's hard. you still have a choice to make it work. when you go gallivanting around the country to church after church speaking about how you live the christian lifestyle - you better darn well show that by how you live and the choices you make. i swear. they are teetering so close to losing all respect - they really need to close the shop, fix their broken family, and move on - for the sake of those kids. omg. what about the kids?!?! beh! double beh!

meanwhile - i would be remiss to fail to mention two more things:

Happy Father's Day to my dear old dad - who is presently still in the hospital, recovering from his last surgery two weeks ago. I love you, Dad! I wish we could be together to celebrate. Get well soon and get home - can't wait to see you again. When is that gonna be exactly?!? XO

And, Happy Father's Day to my sweetie. This is his second time getting to partake of the daddy celebration - and I'm so proud of him - he's the best Daddy to our boy. Quint is so lucky to have you, babe!

until next week, then - eh? take care and be well...

June 18, 2009

broken roads

feeling a bit [picture at left]

can you forgive me for just a little while longer?

thanks, I knew you would ~

June 12, 2009

We're like JET Magazine up in here...

I swear we do not sit at home and practice posing. Seriously.

Thanks Auntie R

June 8, 2009

Be Back Soon

Everything is fine...

Just need a mini-break. Could be two days, could be a week...

Love you guys

June 4, 2009

I've got you, hang on to me...

I've been browsing blogs and I'm seeing that many of you are preparing for the summer, taking breaks from writing, sporadically checking in to let everyone know you're around - just uber busy and/or otherwise pre-occupied. Some of you are racing off to China unexpectedly (wink wink P-mama), just getting back from China, or still trying to settle into your routine after becoming a new parent.

Confession number 1: I'm not busy

Confession number 2: I'm not otherwise pre-occupied

Confesion number 3: I'm neither racing off to China (sniffle), just getting back from China (sigh), nor settling in to new parenting. (btdt)

Honestly? I'm just blue.

I don't know why. I don't know what it is. I can't quite put my finger on it. Every time I think of blogging, I just shrug. Don't know what to say. Feeling kind of bleh. And then blah. And then "sigh".

Maybe because Quint's been having a hard time - whether it be teething out those last two molars, fighting the urge, rather unsuccessfully, to throw a fit at every infarction, or constantly frustrated that we can't communicate yet. This leaves Mama feeling rather overwhelmed. And sometimes I have a tantrum with him - cathartic, I tell myself.

Maybe because Anton is exhausted after finally finishing a long and busy school year - and as ready as he is for a nice long summer break - it's not in the financial cards this time around. I'm sad for that - because he worked so hard and went so far above and beyond for the kids - and it's not time to rest, like it should be.

Maybe the fact that we're staring down summer #4 without our sweetie pie KJ running around the pool - chasing brother - and being silly? Maybe because Quint points to her crib and chatters away as if saying "where is she?". I don't know...she is supposed to be there, isn't she? Feels like we got on a boat fully loaded, fully staffed, and fully gassed. Somewhere over the Pacific we dozed off and when we woke up - we were in a little dingy...no paddles, no oars, no gas...no staff....and not a scrap of land in sight. And so there we are...drifting, rocking, swaying to the silence. No idea when we're going to hit land. No idea if we'll be ready to get out of the boat when we do...

Maybe the fact that the older I get (and I'm not that old, I swear) the faster time just seems to slip away from me. The time to say "I'll go here" and "I'll do this". The time to relax and enjoy my life. The life that already came and went yesterday or the one that's still waiting for me tomorrow. I don't know about you, but I am that person who wanted four kids. Wanted a big family. Wanted lots of things that seem to be drifting away before I can stop them.

People say it all the time - "enjoy it - it goes by too quick".

My Mom said to me just the last time I was with her "I look in the mirror and I can see that I'm almost 60, but my mind doesn't believe it...I say 'I'm not ready to be 60...I'm not done yet...I have so much to do still!' and yet I can argue all I like but I know that it doesn't change the fact that time is always slipping away from me". I love her.

It's how I feel now, I guess.

Where is time running to so fast and what am I supposed to do with the remainder of my adult years - without feeling I've piddled them away on just living? I know it sounds like a tall order, but my lord...there must be more than day in and day out for us.

I want to know what we're supposed to do - our little family. Are we just supposed to be a nuclear family of three...(or four?... or five?...or six?) and live our pretty little life in the suburbs - like the Cleavers? Scraping by like everyone else in this abysmal economy (except Mr. Obama, Oprah, and Dave Ramsey of course) ? Are we supposed to do more? Be more? See more?

I don't know about you. I only know about me, about us. My little handbook of questions. This is like a quest to find where God would have us. Where/how/when/etc.

I do know that AB and I are feeling winds of change...feeling that we are being pulled towards change. Change that may roll thunderously through our lives and uproot us to a grand adventure - but if that's so, then bring the thunder - the very one that rolls the blue away.

Change takes time. So who knows when that will be and what we should do in the interim.

Something about the way AB looked into my eyes tonight - just seeing my "blue" before I could even articulate it to him - it said "don't worry...I'll look after you". Literally. Without a word being said - all that confusion and frustration, and apathy...just rolled back from where it came for a while - all in that one gaze that said "I've got you, hang on to me..."

And maybe I just needed to be reminded that no matter how blue things seem to be sometimes - whether it's about money, or babies, or lack thereof, or family problems, death, sickness, loneliness, discontent...that someone else has my back. Has a tight grasp on me while I dangle over the darkness. Someone holding tightly to the rope that anchors me to my sunshine...to my sweet boys and to my future and all that we can do together.

All three, four or five of us...